Many introductory biology and biochemistry courses introduce students to the modular approach employed in living organisms, covering various subunits and the mechanism by which they are joined through condensation reactions (dehydration synthesis) to generate macromolecules. Rarely do students get to compare the relative size of the monomers and polymers.
This activity features subunits and polymers of four classes of macromolecules: carbohydrates, lipids, proteins and nucleic acids, as well as water molecules and an ice lattice for comparison. All models are constructed on the same scale, two million (2 x 106) times magnified. A poster allows students to match the subunits with each of the macromolecules and learn about their function. The content of the poster has been duplicated on 5 smaller placemats for use as lab stations.
Models in this Collection
- Ice lattice
- Amylose (starch)
- Phospholipid Bilayer
- Beta Globin
- DNA Double Helix
- Monomers: 4 water, 2 glucose, 2 phospholipids, 2 histidines, 2 adenosine monophosphates
Requesting this Model
Loan Time Frame: 3 weeks
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Requesting Other Models
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Contact Margaret Franzen at firstname.lastname@example.org or (414) 277-2824 with questions about the models, teaching resources or educational content.
Model Documentation and Instructions
Teaching Points and Inventory
Amino Acids Placemat
Nucleic Acids Placemat
Models must be returned on or before the due date.
Borrowers are responsible for return shipping costs. We recommend using FedEx or UPS with "two-day ground" transportation. Please make sure to get a tracking number for the shipment.
Please take care when returning models. Any damage incurred in return shipping due to improper packing will be charged to the borrower.
Ship models to:
Milwaukee School of Engineering
1000 N. Market Street
Milwaukee, WI 53202-3113